Guest Post: Speed and Agility Development by Goose

So you want to run like this guy!

But you feel like this guy?

No need to freak out, here are a couple of tips to get you running lightning fast!

1. Conditioning

If you slack on your conditioning it doesn’t matter how fast you can run. You’ll be pooped out after one play and rock the bench for the rest of the game! Here are some suggestions, as well as a link, to get your conditioning game on par:

-Conditioning Article

-Sled Workouts

-Hill/Bleacher Workouts

-Track Workouts

Any conditioning work you do should be focused on maintaining a fast speed for a 15-30 seconds time span. A strong conditioning base is imperative as the game comprises of repeated quick all out bursts of speed for a long time. Keep this in mind when designing your workouts and the role rest plays in said workout.

2. Acceleration

Once your conditioning and strength training needs are met, now it’s time for the fun! Acceleration work should focus on improving your ability to reach your top speed as fast as possible. If you’re a running back, wide receiver, linebacker, or safety you’ll be more efficient at your job if you can reach top speed within 15-20 yards rather than 25-30 yards. Here are some suggestions on how to improve acceleration:

-Overspeed Training

-Downhill Running (Use a slight downhill)

-Resisted Sprint Training

All three of these drills force quicker turn over (how fast your feet hit the ground) and/or exert high amounts of force on the ground. Both are the components needed to accelerate proficiently.

3. Believe in the process!

A lot of young athletes are really eager and fired up to improve but then get discouraged when it doesn’t come fast and easy. Improving your abilities is an everyday, 24/7, 365 day grind. If you are putting in the work on the field and in the weight room, plus staying diligent with flexibility and mobility work, then result will come. (Note from Kelsey: and EAT REAL FOOD!!!) Be patient, allow your body to do its thing, and trust in your coach’s plan!

Physical Presence Speaks Volumes

Basketball season is upon me once again. As I walked into the Patriot Center last Sunday at 5pm (read that again… SUNDAY at 5PM) for our first team practice, I sighed to myself as I noted this is where I will be spending enormous chunks of my days for the next seven months. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy working with this team and staff… but, it does mean I will often end up working 7 days per week for weeks and weeks at a time. Right about now, it may have dawned on you that I’m not a basketball coach, so what do I do at these practices that result in 7 day workweeks, you may be wondering. My role during practice is to conduct the team warm-up (which I previously wrote about here), monitor practice volume and intensity (this is a topic I will post on next week as it is critically important for strength coaches to write effective and complimentary programs), watch practice to see where our team has room for improvement (speed, strength in certain planes of movement, conditioning, etc.), and simply to show support for the team which results in a tight bond between myself and the players and coaching staff.

That last part is the one I want to focus on for this post: one’s physical presence demonstrates support for both the team and coaching staff that will eventually manifest itself into an excellent working relationship between all parties. Clearly this can be applied well beyond college athletics and is the backbone to why you show up for your child’s recitals and various events. Taking it a step further this is a great example of how you can show support for a spouse of coworker. Simply by being present.


Over the last three seasons I have been able to keep a constant pulse on the team and the long-term result is that this year I have put the strongest, fastest, and most well conditioned team on the court (up to this season, at least). This has come from small, but critical, insights to the game I’ve garnered ONLY from hanging around.

What can you learn today by “zipping your lip” and simply listening and watching?